It’s been nearly 15 years since John and Peter left behind their corporate jobs on the East Coast for a fulltime life of travel, often in their RV. But the adventure on the road doesn’t stop for these two website designers when they travel abroad. To take care of their 43-foot motorhome while it’s parked, these vagabonds have mastered the art of RV storage and offered tips for the rest of us.
“We travel internationally as much as we can,” said John. “We’ve been to Australia, New Zealand, Italy. The RV has been in storage 10 or 12 times for a couple of weeks to a few months.”
Since becoming fulltime RVers, they’ve shared tips not only on RV storage but also on everything from inflating tires to replacing batteries on their RVGeeks YouTube channel. It’s worth a watch for sure!
“We’ve never lived in a home as long as we’ve lived in this RV,” said Peter. “We’re home no matter where we are.”
If your own travel plans are on a brief hiatus, keep reading for motorhome storage tips from these RV Geeks to preserve your road trip ride!
Clean Your RV Inside and Out to Avoid Damage
To avoid returning to your stored RV to face unwanted insect guests and festering smells, make sure to deep clean the inside of your motorhome before storage. Scrubbing the outside will also protect paint and fixtures from damage.
“You want to get the grime off the outside and crumbs out of the inside,” said Peter.
Make sure to unplug and clean out the fridge before propping open its doors to prevent mildew.
To help capture odors, the RV Geeks dump about one-third of a box of baking soda down each of their rig’s drains before they leave it in storage.
And don’t forget to drain water tanks if you plan to store an RV for an extended period of time.
“Make sure to dump and clean your black (waste) tank,” said Peter.
Protect Your RV’s Battery, Engine and Tires in Storage
Before you store an RV, make sure your batteries are fully charged and use the battery disconnect switch to save power. This will help your save juice for when you want to return to the road, according to our experts.
“If your RV is equipped with a generator system, make sure your auto generator start (module) is off, so it doesn’t come on in storage,” said Peter.
You may need to take more drastic measures if you plan to store in freezing conditions.
Also make sure your fuel system is as full as possible, so additional moisture doesn’t build in the tank causing contamination that would cause a vacation road block.
“Use a fuel stabilizer or algae prevention (for diesel) to protect your system,” said John.
Don’t forget to cover your RV’s tires before storage to protect them from the sun. And an RV Geeks tried-and-true tire tip is to purchase thin, inexpensive plastic cutting boards and place them under each wheel, to protect them from the chemicals that can leech out of asphalt.
“Inflate to the maximum pressure as listed on the tire side wall – not the driving pressure,” said John. “We have tires that say 120 pounds max API, but we run them lower.”
“This helps the tire resist flattening out at the bottom, especially in cold weather,” added Peter.
Store Your RV with Vent and Window Covers
Vent covers come in handy during storage and on the road to keep out the elements. The RV Geeks learned the value of vents after a group uninvited guests found their way into their RV through the refrigerator vent.
“Thirty bats came swarming out at me!” said John.
Vents are not just great for keeping things out, they help release moisture and heat that can build up in a stored RV escape.
“A roof vent cover will allow air flow, but won’t allow rain to get in – or a bat,” John added.
Sunshine, while a beautiful and appreciated sight on the open road, can be an RV’s archenemy while in storage.
“Cover the entire RV (if you can), because the sun is so damaging to paint, dashboard and tires particularly,” said John. “If it’s a particularly hot or sunny climate, indoor storage would be worthwhile, even if it’s more expensive.”
But if you don’t plan on long-term storage, make sure to close curtains and use a windshield screen to protect your RV’s interior from fading or cracking.
“Put up something that will block light from coming in the windows, to keep the heat from coming in,” added Peter.
For more tips on how to keep your RV top-notch, make sure to check out the RV Geeks!
Looking for affordable RV storage? Head over to PublicStorage.com to find a facility with parking near you!
Photos courtesy of John and Peter, the RV Geeks.